Embee Software Private Ltd is a leading Indian Technology solutions and services provider focused on driving digital transformation in the Indian mid-market, with a turnover crossing USD 100 million in FY21. Embee’s mission is to enable organizations to transform with technology in a digital, mobile-first, data-driven world. The company’s solution portfolio spans the public & hybrid cloud, modern workplace, business apps, data analytics, cybersecurity, smart classrooms & surveillance, all backed by support and managed services operations.
Embee maintains a strategic relationship with leading technology OEMs in India. The company has been a Microsoft partner for over 27 years and a key LSP since 2010. As an early adopter of Cloud solutions, Embee was recognized as the Cloud Software Partner of the Year for APAC by Canalys in 2017, Microsoft Country Partner of the Year in 2018, and DevOps finalist award winner 2020.
In a conversation with Mr. Sudhir Kothari – CEO & Managing Director of Embee Software Pvt, read out his views on the current industry scenario, his journey, and what Embee Software is all about.
- What are the initial challenges you faced and what are the reasons behind the company’s long-standing success?
I distinctly remember my childhood aspiration to start and lead an organization. An eye on the future led me to technology. I had no technical background, but from day 1, I approached the business as a learner. When I founded Embee in 1986, over three decades ago, there were no smartphones. We used to prepare proposals on a typewriter!
We started with selling global licenses of IBM Lotus and then Microsoft Office. The transition to hardware and SI solutions was a natural progression. With the need for recurring services revenue, we began our AMC practice. I always had my eye on acquiring quality customers and creating long-term relationships. With the growth in our base business, we became a global strategic partners of Microsoft in 2010.
As the organization grew, I developed the vision of Embee as the technology partner for its customers. One key driver of our growth and transformation was to keep moving up the value chain and not stagnate. I have always had my eye on new technologies and areas of business. Hiring the right employees and setting the right processes were also some of the key significant challenges faced by me as a businessman. We’re a very people-driven business, and I am blessed with a fantastic team.
- What are the products or services the company focuses on? How are your services different from those in the market?
We like to divide our solutions and services into five main buckets: Cloud services, Workplace modernization, Apps & Data solutions, System Integration, and Managed Services.
We are unique in our field not only in terms of our solutions and services offerings but also in the breadth of our engagement at the customer’s place. Partnering, advocating & supporting our Enterprise customers on their successful digital & cloud journey is the main strategy & goal for us. We begin with consulting and strategizing the digital journey of our customers. But we’re not merely interested to sell and move on. Not only do we design solution architecture, but also see the project to the very end by deploying the solution. Moreover, we are focused on enhancing customer ROI by ensuring training and tech adoption. Ultimately, we seek to take away the headache of managing IT by offering Managed Services. So in a nutshell, we make IT easier!
You can’t grow if you don’t change the way you work, come up with new ideas and invest in technologies that will drive the future.
- How do you decide to take the company a step further?
We always have one step in the future. We are geared up to bring Embee 2.0 transformation with solutions & services to help make businesses smarter and grow faster. We have already begun our journey to make Embee a complete consulting, solutions, and service provider with industry domain expertise.
We also want to ensure that we are ready for the next wave of transformation by embracing new technologies and enhancing the value proposition for the customer. Upgrading the skills within the teams so that we can dive deeper into data and app modernization services such as AI and ML, the technologies of tomorrow.
In recent times, we have become an advanced specialization partner in Windows Virtual Desktop, Azure on Kubernetes, and Windows Servers and Widows SQL Server Migration to Azure. These certifications speak volumes of the organization’s readiness for the technologies of tomorrow.
In terms of geo expansion, we recently started our services in Bahrain, Middle East to become a leading IT solutions provider not only in India but in other countries too. This is an exciting step in our journey to serving customers across the globe.
- Being a successful leader in Microsoft Solutions, please share your views on current business scenarios across the globe.
Cloud data centers will process 94% of workloads in 2021. Regardless of the size of the business, cloud computing can affect the speed and intensity of its growth through several factors. When businesses are on the cloud, complex tasks are made simpler and data processing more efficient.
With over 60% of businesses using cloud services, it is obvious that cloud business is not only here to stay but also grow substantially. Real-time with the cloud ensures high availability and minimum downtime- Uninterrupted services. Cloud automation is also transforming the workplace. It is already enabling Work-from-Home and will go a long way in transforming the way we work.
The transition to the cloud can enhance the overall productivity reduce the financial burden and enhance capabilities and scalabilities. In the immediate context, it can drastically reduce the limitation posed by the remote and work from home. Employees can access and share any data or information on the cloud and can work in better collaboration with them. Cloud uses many technologies, of which the programming model, data management, data storage, virtualization are the key technologies. Virtualization is a method of deploying computing resources.
- Can you please brief us about your professional experience?
I am a Bachelor of Commerce (B. Com) graduate from St. Xaviers College, Calcutta. I always wanted to start and run an organization. In the process, I have learned that being kind and keeping everyone together is most crucial to the success of any project, plan, or business. I am a big proponent of fairness.
As a CEO and Managing Director at Embee, my prime responsibility is to ensure that the organization is perpetually relevant to all its stakeholders. Ensure that people are aligned to the vision and goals of the organization. Define strategy and monitor its execution.
Constantly involved in the monitoring of change management as technology business has become highly dynamic. I also play the role of the CIO in the organization to ensure that the company keeps evolving in business automation processes.
- What are the key achievements of your business journey?
Our journey started in 1989, where we focused on software reselling. We opened our first branch in Mumbai in 1992. Then during 1996-2000, we emerged as a Microsoft Licensing Partner and won key accounts such as Indian Army and Tata Steel. Our major growth journey started in 2000 where we established the Audio Visual and Surveillance business and expanded our presence across new locations.
So, from software reselling to being a front runner in the technology solution and services industry, Embee has now matured into a trusted technology and strategic partner that is driving organizations towards digital transformation.
- ‘Innovation is the key to business growth’, Please share your views.
Yes. Innovation is crucial for the growth of every business. You can’t grow if you don’t change the way you work, come up with new ideas and invest in technologies that will drive the future. The key to any successful business is to keep updating its products and services relevant to the current scenario. Innovation plays a very important role in any business venture.
- Please share your thoughts on what businesses should do to be relevant in the market race after the COVID19 outbreak.
People are gradually discovering the ‘new normal, be it in social interaction, business operations, or even leisure. COVID-19 hit us all suddenly. Many businesses found themselves unprepared and scrambled to adopt various technologies to keep the ball rolling. Comprehensive technologies for remote productivity, collaboration, and business continuity have existed for several years.
The future is digital, and I firmly believe that businesses and institutions must use this disruption as an opportunity to adapt and transform with technology. We at Embee have been enabling organizations to precisely do that for over three decades.
Cloud computing has become a big game-changer in all the sectors offers the benefits of flexibility, scalability, remote work management, data security, unlimited storage, easy access, pay-as-you-go model, and data analytics. Many organizations are even shifting to hybrid cloud models to address the need to analyze data closer to the source.
- Whose business story do you find the most inspiring?
I distinctly remember when I was around 12-13 years old, I knew somebody who used to work for Tata Steel. He talked a lot about Shri JRD Tata and how he is a phenomenal human being and leader. From there, my passion to create something of my own and nurture other people started growing. If you are empathetic, self-aware, and do not shy away from taking risks, then you can become a good leader.
Embee Software’s Driving Force
Sudhir Kothari, Managing Director & CEO
As CEO and MD of Embee, Sudhir is credited with founding an organization that has over the last 3 decades, transformed itself from a transactional product seller to a trusted IT solutions advisor. Deeply aligned with world-class OEM’s who are leaders in Technology and are at the forefront of Emerging Technology Disruption, Sudhir has guided Embee with his vision which rests on the core values of Customer Centricity, Change, Agility, and Intrapreneurship.
Bipul Patra, President – Business Strategy & Technology
Bipul, as President – Business Strategy & Technology is proactively supporting Embee’s business transformation towards tech-intensive solutions & services, especially on customer’s successful digital transformation journey. Bipul has a rich set of IT Industry knowledge and experiences over 28+ years across various leadership roles in Sales, Pre-Sales, Solutions, and Consulting Services. He has been instrumental in working with large turnkey solutions across varied industry domains.
Nilesh Coutinho, Senior Vice President- Sales & Business Development – West
Nilesh, through his more than 2 decades of association with Embee, is credited for laying the foundation for the organization’s deep alignment with key Principals in the Software Solutions domain. His passion for providing his customers with the latest technology solutions has translated into a constant year-on-year growth of Embee’s business.
Sanjay Kuchroo, Vice President – Sales North and South
Sanjay comes to Embee with a rich and deep experience in Software Sales & Solutions. Over the last 18 years, he has carried P & L responsibilities and is credited with building enduring relationships with his customers. Sanjay has been entrusted with expanding Embee’s footprint in the North and South regions of India.
Uday Bhanu Bose, AVP & Business Head – AV & CCTV Solutions
Uday leads Embee’s foray into the Audio Visual domain from more than a decade back. He is credited with expanding the footprint into Building Management Solutions including CCTV, Fire Security, biometrics, and others. He has also helped build Project Management capability in this space and expand the business and scale newer peaks.
Vishal Shaw, General Manager – Finance & Accounts
A qualified Chartered Accountant, Vishal is credited with leveraging technology in the Fin & Accounts function at Embee to meet the fast-changing regulatory requirements and the complexities of a dynamic money marketplace. Easily adapting to the emerging importance of Data, he has helped build strong Analytics and Business Intelligence for the organization.
Iqbal Baliwala, VP & Business Lead – Cloud Services
Being an early adopter of technology, Iqbal is credited with leading the initiative to introduce Embee to the Cloud much before it gained wide acceptance. He is an Azure and specifically a Tech Evangelist. His dynamism and energy, which fuel his performance arise from ensuring that his customers can achieve their business objectives by leveraging technology.
Utsav Kothari, AVP- HR
Utsav leads HR, taking charge of planning, recruitment, and people management at Embee. A strong believer in an adhocracy, he seeks to transform Embee into a corporate with an open culture identified with larger organizations but the agility of a small one.
Shivani Sharma, AVP – Marketing MARCOM
Shivani leads market outreach programs pan solutions within Embee. These outreach programs range between demand and lead generation, revenue-boosting go-to-market & engagement strategies through strategized PPC campaigns, experience design & development, storytelling, and more.